7 Stops Not to Miss While Strolling Around Downtown Baltimore
With autumn upon us and summertime humidity starting to wane, there’s no better time to set out to explore Baltimore on foot. The city has so much to offer and the downtown area is especially fun, with tons of sites and activities packed into every square mile.
And let’s face it, we could probably all use a little stroll right now – going for a walk is the best way to step away from the computer and the internet’s 24/7 Brad Pitt-Jennifer Aniston divorce coverage. Poor Brangelina. But we need a break.
Fortunately, every September, Baltimore gives us the gift of a few days of gorgeous weather. Before the temperature drops, spend a day – or even a few hours – wandering and getting to know the city. Need some inspiration? Build a walk around one of these seven activities:
- Museum Hop
Baltimore’s downtown area is rife with museums – and not just any museums, either. “Play with a purpose” at the award winning Port Discovery Children’s Museum. Or dive into African American history at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum, named for the late Reginald F. Lewis, a highly accomplished lawyer and philanthropist who hailed from Baltimore. Or jump under the sea at the National Aquarium, where you can get up close and personal with all kinds of aquatic life and learn about maritime environments both local and international.
- Explore Italia
One of Baltimore’s most famous neighborhoods, Little Italy encompasses several blocks filled with fabulous restaurants, twinkling lights and Old World charm. Anchored by St. Leo’s, the local parish, the community sponsors numerous events throughout the year, including outdoor movies, a bocce league and festivals sprinkled throughout the year.
Little Italy: www.littleitalymd.org
- Hop on a Boat
How often do you have the opportunity to see the water from the water? Near the Baltimore harbor, all you have to do is catch a water taxi to hop from downtown to Federal Hill to Fells Point and back again. It’s a gorgeous way to explore the city – there’s nothing quite like the ocean breeze.
Of course, not all Baltimore boats are mobile. Visitors to the Inner Harbor area have the opportunity to see maritime history firsthand, as they explore the four historic ships located at different points around the harbor, and Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse, built in 1856, located near the US Coast Guard Cutter Taney on Pier 5.
- Take in a Game
How ‘bout dem O’s? With the pennant race heating up, the Orioles are on everybody’s minds. As they should be!
Oriole Park at Camden Yards is widely considered one of the most beautiful parks in baseball – it’s a sight to behold during Oriole’s games and also when the stadium is empty. Grab a game or stroll through on a quiet day, checking out the statues and stands, and maybe grabbing a beer or lunch at a park restaurant (some remain open even when games are not in session).
Don’t forget to look down, too! On the ground, you’ll spot markers showing where home run balls that have been hit out of the park landed. It’s impressive!
Oriole Park at Camden Yards: Baltimore.orioles.mlb.com/bal/ballpark
- Find a Park
Baltimore is a city of parks, but what some people don’t realize is that not every local park is a vast expanse of land tucked off in a faraway corner of the town. In fact, a couple fun parks are located right downtown – and they make perfect stops for wandering families in need of a short break.
Stroll through the green space of Columbus Park or stop at Pierce’s Park near Pier 5 to mess around on the playground equipment. Here, too, you’ll want to look down – the walkway is engraved with dozens of homonyms.
Baltimore City Parks: http://www.godowntownbaltimore.com/map/parks_map.pdf
- Shop & Sip in Style
One of Baltimore’s glossiest neighborhoods, Harbor East is home to fabulous restaurants and excellent shopping. From the waterfront, which boasts the Under Armour Brand House and restaurants like Wit & Wisdom in the Four Seasons Hotel, Azumi and Ouzo Bay, to shop-lined Aliceanna Street, the neighborhood is always bustling and full of chic fun around every corner.
- Enjoy Some Tunes (pier six, rams head live, soundstage)
With Pier Six Pavilion, Rams Head Live! and Baltimore Soundstage all located right in the downtown area, there’s always something great to listen to in the neighborhood. Upcoming shows include a wildly diverse mix of acts, from the Dandy Warhols at Rams Head Live to rapper Jeremih at Soundstage.
For any of these strolls, Harbor Park Garage is a convenient home base – park your car and head off in any direction. The garage, located at 55 Market Place, is reasonably priced and staffed with knowledgeable and friendly people who will be more than happy answer questions or point you in the right direction.
Harbor Park Garage: www.harborparkgarage.com